Foley Hoag Partners Clara Brillembourg and Mélida Hodgson Recognized by Latinvex as Top Female Lawyers Specializing in Latin America

June 20, 2017

Foley Hoag LLP partners Clara Brillembourg and Mélida Hodgson were recently named to Latin America's Top 30 Female Lawyers in the International Arbitration list by Latinvex, a publisher of daily news and weekly analysis on Latin America business.

Each year, Latinvex selects the top 100 international female lawyers in Latin America broken down by areas of specialty and expertise. The criteria for selection includes a combination of factors, including regional and local prominence, law firm prominence, and awards and recognition from sources such as Chambers and Partners, Legal 500 and Thomson Reuters.  Brillembourg and Hodgson were recognized in the arbitration/litigation category, making this Brillembourg’s second time and Hodgson’s third time on the list.

Latinvex acknowledged Brillembourg’s work successfully representing sovereign States before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), and her work counseling States in boundary disputes before the ICJ, UNCLOS Annex VII arbitral tribunals, and the International Tribunal on the Law of the Sea (ITLOS). Her “headline-grabbing victory” for Uruguay against Philip Morris at ICSID in July 2016 was prominently highlighted by the publication. Brillembourg’s representation of Uruguay in an ICSID case brought by Italba Corp. under the US - Uruguay BIT concerning the regulation of claimant’s telecommunications license was also mentioned, as was her representation of Nicaragua in several disputes with Costa Rica at the International Court of Justice.

Hodgson returns once again to Latinvex’s list, and was recognized for her role in advising Venezuela in several multi-million and  billion dollar claims at the ICSID. The publication noted her representation of Venezuela in a case brought by Canadian miner Crystallex, in which the Tribunal awarded $1.2 billion in damages–only a third of the $3.4 billion originally sought. Hodgson was also acknowledged for advising Venezuela on a $3.3 billion claim by Rusoro Mining, which in the end was reduced to a $1.2 billion award; and representing Venezuela in a claim brought by Canadian gold mining company Gold Reserve, in which three of four claims were dismissed, and damages for the remaining claim were assessed at $713 million, significantly down from the $1.2 billion originally sought. She is currently representing Perú in an infrastructure dispute arising out of the construction of a metro line, where the amount in dispute is in excess of $200 million.

Brillembourg and Hodgson, who are partners in Foley Hoag’s International Litigation and Arbitration Department, were both recognized for their roles on the firm’s team that advised Venezuela against an ICSID case brought by Tenaris S.A. and Talta-Trading Marketing, in which the Tribunal rejected an $800 million claim and instead only awarded $87 million.

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